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Big, bad, mac daddy


Yes, it’s large and in charge. No, I don’t have a complex. But oh, so much fun to play with. Nikon’s sharpest telephoto zoom lens- the Nikon AF-S 80-200mm f/2.8. An amazing piece of glass. I rented it this weekend to test it out, as I have heard, read, known and coveted it’s superiority for a long time yet have never shot with one. Thanks to Glazer’s Rentals, this bad boy was mine all weekend long for $25. This lens is on my list of wants so I wanted to take the opportunity to check out how close to the top it needs to be or even if it would suit what I plan to use it for.


Of course we had a ton of fun just playing around with it. And taking pictures of each other playing around with it. This is not to be taken lightly. In fact the lens alone weighs close to ten pounds, which was (and still is) my primary concern with owning one. It feels like all lens when attached to my D80, far less so when balanced out on the F4s and likely similar on a D3 or D700. I found it must be attached to a monopod otherwise about half my shots had some amount of camera shake blurring to them. I guess I was hoping the lens wouldn’t be that unwieldy so I could hand-hold it. The monopod is a bit cumbersome in shooting kids, who don’t stay still so you typically have to try and move as fast as they do. It is nice to be farther back from your subjects so you are a bit less noticed, though that hasn’t been my usual shooting style as I like to interact more.


While I am really in love with this lens, I am eager to compare it to the smaller, lighter and cheaper Nikon AF 80-200mm f/2.8 D, which though not as sharp may be more equal in the environment I am in because it is less cumbersome. Not a contestant, though, due to the ginormous cost, is the 70-200mm f/2.8 VR which I hear wonderful things about too. Any of the above lenses really achieve the same overall use and affects I am wanting. One, super sharp; Two, that general zoom range; Three, a nicely blurred background (as seen below); Four, fast open glass.



I know I can go on and on about how it isn’t really the equipment that makes great pictures, but the right stuff when used properly does make a huge difference. Not to mention fun to use. I am really stoked with the results of what I shot this weekend (I took about 1000 photos), more on that later when I tie up some things that are in the works.

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